Patriots put out a rebuttal. They had an interesting explanation for the text by one of the equipment managers who called himself The Deflator. They said he was just referring to losing weight because he was chunky and wanted to lose weight and Deflator was the term he used.
Rebuttal to Rebuttal
In Wells’ rebuttal to the rebuttal he seemed to be saying that The Deflator had even threatened the Patriots with going to ESPN with the story. And if The Deflator was just talking about losing weight as the Patriots say, why did the Patriots suspend him and another equipment manager indefinitely.
Will Patriots appeal?
Apparently it is common for the players’ association to put out a rebuttal, but rare for an owner to buck the league. Normally everything is done behind closed doors. After all, the 32 owners have to get along. The Patriots had one week in which to appeal the decision. Brady appealed. But why would the Patriots put out the rebuttal if they were going to appeal? It is more likely that this was put out to save face and that Robert Kraft won’t appeal. But why put in things that are so ridiculous as mentioned above that that is what people are talking about and not the reasonable points. And why put it out at all since being defiant and devious is what got the Patriots and Brady slapped much harder than they probably would have otherwise. Judy Battista wrote an interesting article about this.
View different in Boston
Of course, people in Boston don’t see it the same way as the rest of the country. A law professor from Northeastern University wrote an article saying that it would be uncalled for the the first game of the season which is always played by the Super Bowl champions at home to be played without Tom Brady. He felt there was little evidence and that Brady should have been fined but not suspended as punishment for not cooperating with the investigation.
Bob Ryan of the Boston Globe feels that the league is out to get the Patriots for past transgressions and that the punishment far outweighs the crime.
Deal in the Works?
Some of the other owners feel the punishment was excessive as well and there is now speculation that there will be some compromise at the coming owner’s meeting. If a deal is reached, what effect would that have? One article thought it would imply the Patriots’ guilt and it would make the NFL look like it had no valid discipline guidelines. And how would the fans react since the NFL is very publicity conscious? How could they explain a reduction that made sense and didn’t just look like spin control?
The issue with Brady is separate from the Patriots, but we have read reports that the Patriots are quietly looking for compromise and that might include an understanding that Brady’s suspension would be decreased if he dropped his law suit. We will see what happens.